I’ll tell you about my favorite of the Lenz Winery chardonnays tomorrow, but today let’s focus on one that I didn’t like as much. Actually, I’ve never cared for winemaker Eric Fry’s Gold Label Chardonnay
much, and his 2005 release ($20) is no different.
made in the California style that is – thankfully – losing popularity
among most wine drinkers.
It’s medium-dark gold in the glass with a lot of
oak on the nose, coming across with toasted marshmallow, sweet oak, and
faint caramel aromas. There’s also some roasted apple there, but it’s
subservient to the domineering oak.
The fruit and oak play more equal roles
on a lush, fuller-bodied, mouth-filling palate, though. Apples, pears and just a little citrus
are joined by more vanilla, a creamy mid-palate and just barely enough
acidity to keep it from being flabby.
Is it in a California style? Sure,
but it’s an above average, well-made version. It’s just not the type of chardonnay I’m ever going to reach for with dinner.